REVIEW: Various Artists “Future Balearica”

Various Artists

Future Balearica
(Needwant Recordings)

Giving Balearic Beat a facelift, UK-based Needwant Recordings’ first edition of new mix compilations¸ Future Balearica: New Chill and Warm Laidback Sounds, is 70+ minutes of dreamy lounge electronica. It’s an easy, melding flow of sunny dance rhythms and hazy synths that seamlessly fall into each other, creating one long soundtrack for your island beach getaway.

And that’s where the beauty of Future Balearica lays – in the subtlety of its track changes. While the entirety of the record plays like one house act’s lengthy piece of work, the switches in tempos and vocalizations from slow & longing to heated & sensual to delightful & playful are like little wake up calls during your moment of relaxation. But that’s also the drawback. When you have a compilation that boasts collaborators like The xx, Animal Collective and Fete, there should be some distinction between the acts, with their trademark beats shining through the semblance (unfortunately, unless you look up the track list, you have no idea where the aforementioned bands’ contributions lie).

Granted, such a blurry flow may be what you want from a house mix comp but if the press for Future Balearica is going to focus on the offerings of the “big” name acts, then the actual record should back it up.

DOWNLOAD: Fete’s “The Islands,” Iain Archer’s “Canal Song”



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